We all know how important branding is, it’s more than just a logo, tagline, or colors. It’s EVERYTHING associated with your company! It’s the feeling someone gets, or the words they think, when they see your brand.
Do they know your brand? Have they had a positive experience with your brand? Do they trust your brand?
Take a moment to look at these company names and mentally make note of what comes to your mind. Do you instantly think of their logo and colors? Do you automatically know who they are or what they do? Do you have positive thoughts? Does it spark "feel good" memories?
- That football league that we’re not allowed to mention . . . (sorry, you can’t talk about branding without going there)
Now let’s reverse the game, look at these items and mentally note what brand automatically comes to mind:
- Sticky Notes
- Lip Balm
- Cotton Swabs
So what have these companies done to not only be immediately recognized, but even immersed themselves into our language and become part of our everyday conversations? If you’re involved in marketing at all, you already know the answer. Longevity, quantity, and consistency. They’ve all been around for a very long time, you see their brand everywhere, on everything, and they commit to making sure their brand remains consistent.
Time is something you can’t control, either your company has been around a long time or not. If not, than you have to work even harder on the other aspects. Quantity is definitely something you can control, but it requires budget, time and resources to make it happen (are you starting to feel that heart race a little?). The final one, consistency, is the real heart stressor in my opinion.
You have hundreds of people in your organization, all trying to get the tools they need to grow your business. Joe in HR decided he must have these cool new employee folders made, but he had to have the logo sent to the new vendor in an hour. He knows he’ll never be able to get it in time from graphics, so he copies it from the website and erases the extra stuff that was around the logo and crosses his fingers! (yep, you’re cringing right now aren’t you?) Sally in customer service decides she wants to start sending hand written notes to all of her customers, but she doesn’t want to take the time to put in the request, wait through the artwork and approval process, and all the other delays of trying to order anything with the company logo on it. So she gives up and just buys blank cards at the store.
You know we could go on forever with stories like these. Maintaining brand consistency can be a nightmare! But it is SO critical to successful branding, that every company MUST figure out a way. Partnering with a trusted vendor and building a marketing portal for your entire company will not only protect your brand, it will reduce your workload and stress level. Make it easy for your team to access the promotional and branded materials they need and they will stop destroying your brand consistency. They may even begin to increase your brand exposure due to having easy access to branded materials, promotional gear, and apparel!
Most importantly, everything will come from a single source that knows your branding and how to keep it consistent throughout, and they will manage it all for you! Imagine what you can achieve with all your extra time!